Updated: May 30, 2019
Wow! Did we have fun, playing, running, jumping and exploring with these two and their super fun parents!
It was about 9:00am on an early summer morning when we met this family in the parking lot of this spectacular beach.
Those first few moments of meeting new people, in a parking lot, with your kids who don't know exactly what is about to happen, can be a little awkward. But on this day, while mom was wrangling the little guy into his shorts, the little girl leapt out of her car seat, ran at me with open arms and jumped up for a hello hug!
Well hello! So nice to meet you!
If your little one may not be so inclined for a running, jumping hello hug, that's ok! We'll meet them where they are!
We leave our cameras in the car for those introductions, and try to establish a bit of a rapport with your whole family before we begin our photo journey together.
The little guy was shy, just before these were taken!
If we can, we try to start with photos away from the sand-- "What? Why? We want to be on the beach!"
Of course you do, and we will get you down there, but the longer we can keep your kiddos dry and without the amazingly fine Hawaiian sand all over them, the better. So for these two we plopped them on top of a picnic table, definitely their first time of getting to be on a table-- they were both a little unsure about that, but with Mom's approval and some extra reassurance from us, we all got to have some fun. The middle photo was definitely a family favorite. Mom almost started to cry because she said they don't usually interact much at home, but we got them to show some love!
Then it was time to hit the beach, and why not start with a bit of a race? Yes, mom, you too!
For us, as photographers, and for our more natural style, we really want to ensure that your kids are having fun when they're with us. It's not usually in a kid's nature to hold still, and smile, smile, smile, hold still, look at the camera, look at the lady with the camera!
So instead we try for age-appropriate fun. By letting the kids run around (in a controlled manner,) especially when we're a bit more comfortable together, it allows them to expend energy and we get real smiles. In the photo where they're racing, we actually asked the little girl to run in slow motion so little brother wouldn't be too far behind her. She thought that that was hysterical! She was laughing, mom is smiling at her and the little guy thinks he has a chance of beating big sister in a race! What joy!
In the one with her hands on her hips, she is actually resting in between rounds of doing twirls (she is wearing a pouffy dress after all!) She may not ever remember that she was dizzy-giddy here, and grandma and grandpa won't know that at all. What they will know, however (since they have this photo framed and hung on their living room wall), is that their granddaughter has a beautiful, genuine smile that makes them smile!
Time for an outfit change and to meet Dad!
Dad had to go back to work, so we kept out of the water, and still had some fun!
We make it a priority to not only get shots of the whole family together, but to also get special moments of each parent with each child, and we ask parents if there is something you want to remember about this time in their lives. The little guy was just still so lovey towards his mama, so she wanted some kiss-kiss photos.
Then we left the beach behind, and went tide pool exploring!
This was the spot where Mom & Dad did their engagement photos. Going there with their whole family will only make this place, and these photos more special. If we are able to meet a wish of yours like that we are happy to do so! We know that for many of our clients it's their first time on the island, so we have plenty of gorgeous beach recommendations. But for our families who live here, we are happy to try to accommodate special location requests!
Last but not least: My favorite photo from their session...
This is not a "typical" family portrait. However, I do think it is a typical scene in the day-in-day-out-ness of family life.
Little guy was getting tired and a bit cranky, but there dad is giving him a kiss and letting him know we're almost done. Look at his sweet wind-swept hair, tiny slippers and the ease in his face. And I hope his dad forever remembers the feel of his little hand holding onto his arm, and the smell of his son after he'd played in the waves.
Then there's mom teaching her wonderfully curious daughter about some little shell-dweller she's picked out of the tide pool. No admonishment about getting dirty, just a smiling explanation that the ocean is full of all sorts of life forms in their various and wondrous diversity.
They are together, but each parent is taking care of a child in the way that that child needed right then.
That seems like family to me.
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